Sunday, July 30, 2006

Tortillas are the enemy

So I have discovered over the past few days, with the assistance of, that tortillas are the enemy. Tortilla chips, tortilla shells, just tortillas in general. I know I have a problem when it comes to tortillas, but I never knew how bad what I thought my general consumption was. I know I can't buy bags of Tostitos anymore because I will eat the whole thing. But I didn't know how bad for me my four chicken soft tacos for dinner were. I am going to need to reshape my whole dinner diet because chicken soft tacos (homemade, don't worry) are just killing me.

I have also seen that I eat better during the week than on the weekend. I have more structure during the week, so that makes sense. I also have less access to food during the week - unless you could the evil vending machine at work that is home to the sinister cinnamon brown sugar Pop Tarts.

I should start putting together my baggies of goodness - little snack bags of carrots, Cherrios and pretzel sticks. They account for my breakfast and snacks during the day at work. Last week was the first time I did it and it seemed to work well. I only had the evil Pop Tarts once. I was supposed to make a tuna casserole tonight for lunches this week, but I of course got lazy. I still have one lunch left over from last week that I can eat tomorrow. Think I'll actually make the casserole tomorrow night? Personally, I have my doubts, but we'll see.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Reality Bites

So I've been tracking my calories for the past few days at I'm still in the honeymoon stage where I log on after every meal and snack. I have a confession to make. I had cinnamon brown sugar pop tarts this afternoon. 420 calories! According to my food diary, that was more than my lunch! Then I thought I'd be healthy and have "sushi" for dinner tonight. That was a mistake. Not only was it revolting (but of course I ate the entire thing), but it was 1200 calories! According to my diary for the day, my calories are on track for maintaining my weight. Great. Just what I wanted to hear. I'm just getting back into the swing of things with realizing how many calories food actually has. No wonder I have been gaining weight for the last year!

Today sucked. I saw someone I worked with 10 years ago at a happy hour, but I walked right past her because I didn't think she'd recognize me with all the weight I've gained. I just didn't want to have to wait and watch it process across her face who I was. She, of course, looks like she lost weight. Later I thought about going up to her and saying hello, but she had already left. Just as well. I never really liked her anyway. Even so, I feel like a failure. Ten years later and look what I've become. Is it going to take me 10 more years to take it all off?

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Hit me baby one more time ...

I'm going to try this one more time with a picture. And then I'm gonna stop. Please scroll down to read the actual posts to this blog! Thanks!

Trixie Belden

In order to post a cute little picture of "me" next to my description of the blog in the upper left-hand corner (actually a picture of Trixie Belden), I have to post it to the blog first. (Yet another bit of inflexibility that comes with a free blog. I'm sorry.) For those of you who do not know, Trixie was a fictional "girl detective" in a series of young adult novels. The first novel, "The Secret of the Mansion" was published in 1948. While it was published a little before my time, I "discovered" them when I was a kid and loved them. Trixie was spunky, smart and flawed, just like I like my heroines.

I promise to write more about my inner turmoil surrounding my weight loss soon!

Literary & Online Resources

I just went searching around looking for a way to link to the book and website I mentioned in my last post permanently on the left-hand side of the blog, but it doesn't seem feasible. (I guess free technology has its limitations.) So, I'm going to try to do it in this post. Wish me luck!

First Steps

I still can't say I'm committed to losing weight yet, but I have been taking some steps. I went looking for weight loss-inspired online journals and blogs. There's a lot out there that keeps track of how many calories a person has consumed, how many fat grams, how much saturated fat, carbohydrates, proteins, sodium, (are you getting tired yet, because I am) and even in some cases what color the food was (just kidding). But there isn't a lot out there about how people feel about losing weight and what thoughts go through their minds. If anybody knows of any websites with that kind of content, please send me the link. So, that is what inspired this blog. I thought, if I can't find it myself, I'll send off my own missives into cyberspace and see if anybody else is listening and feeling the same way. Here's what I've found so far in my quest to lose weight:

Tales from the Scale by Erin J. Shea is a book I found containing exactly what I was looking for online. It is a collection of blogs by seven female writers in book form, the most famous of whom is Erin Shea who 'penned' the blog "Lose the Buddha". The writers share their insights and feelings on topics ranging from "'The Twinkie Defense' - how they gained weight in the first place, 'The Inner Fat Girl' - the little voice that longs for an identity beyond the body and 'I've Always Liked Big Girls' - Sex and the Fat Woman: experiences with sex, dating, and feeling sexy beyond a size six." It made me laugh out loud and almost made me cry (I'm a tough cookie) and really made me realize that I belong, in spirit, to a group of strong, courageous women who are struggling with the same issues I am. I highly recommend it, so much so, that I'm going to try to put a link to it on the left-hand side of this blog. - As I wrote, I was looking for online journals by other women trying to lose weight and I found something unexpected - a website that tracks your food, exercise and measurements and gives you cool charts and graphs. I'm sure I'm the last person to find this site and I realize it isn't the only site out there doing this, but I'm new to this whole diet and nutrition thing. I thought it was so cool that I agreed to plunk down $9 bucks a month on a student's budget to give it a try. (There's no minimum number of months required and you can cancel at any time, so what's there to lose?) It has pages and pages of endorsements by satisfied customers and almost as many press mentions in publications like New York Magazine and The Wall Street Journal - two of my favorite sources. So, instead of sharing all my numbers with you, I'll be keeping track of them on this website. I'm going to try to put a link to it on the left as well.

I'm very excited about these two "discoveries". It makes me feel less lonely in the world of weight loss. It's tough when you don't have someone to share how you feel about your body and your desire to change it on a day-to-day basis. I look in the mirror when I'm in the bathroom at work and wonder, how did I get this way? It's like I am seeing myself for the first time. The pockets on my pants gape and won't lay flat. The seams stretch on my pants. My shirts ride up in the front and the back. (But, I comfort myself with the fact that my ankles look F-A-B-U-L-O-U-S!) How did this happen? How did I let this happen? Where was I when this was happening? How do I change it? How long will it take? It feels like it happened without me being conscious of it, so why can't I lose all the weight without having to be so vigilant? I gained all this weight over the span of years, but I want to take it off in a year. Is that possible? I'm trying to crunch the numbers, but the numbers don't tell me how hard it's going to be to stop ordering take out and to put that third beer back in the fridge and to not make a late night run to the grocery store for a pint of vanilla Ben & Jerry's. What is going to take the place of food in my life? What's going to celebrate my successes with me and comfort me in my failures? What is going to help me handle my stress and let me kick back and relax? I'll leave you with this parting thought - How do you break bread with someone when you can't eat the bread anymore?

Friday, July 21, 2006

Where should I start?

I haven't hit that point yet. I haven't hit that point where you are ready to make the commitment to change your life - to lose weight. I keep thinking it will come. It didn't come when I ate that whole medium Pizza Hut pepperoni pizza one night (it was thin crust). It didn't come when summer arrived and I had to put on a bathing suit to enjoy the apartment complex pool I was paying for. I didn't come when my sister said I started looking different (we know what she meant) a few months ago. It didn't come when my underwear started to feel tight. It didn't come when the size 18 jeans from The Gap were almost to tight to button. (I refuse to buy a size 20.) I want it to come, I want that epiphany, that a ha moment. But maybe it isn't just one defining moment. Maybe its a series of little things. I just don't know what's going to tip the scales, so to speak.

I've been thinking about going to a Weight Watchers meeting. This is a big step for me. I always thought those things were ridiculous for someone who'd managed to graduate 7th grade - why count points, when you can count calories? (Sorry to offend.) I can count calories just fine, I even have a book that includes the calories for just about every kind of food in the United States. I just choose not to count them. I guess counting isn't really the whole point. There must be more to it. I mean I've known tons of people over the years who have gone to Weight Watchers - some small, some big. And I've never understood Weight Watchers groups at work. Isn't it just awful to admit to everyone you work with your weakness? I mean if you don't admit you're on a diet, maybe no one notices your overweight?

That's my favorite . . . When my friends who are 5 feet 2 and weigh 100 pounds soaking wet complain about gaining 5 pounds during the first year of our grad school program. Doesn't it ever occur to them that they shouldn't complain about such trivial things in front of someone MY SIZE! But my mom will always say, or some well meaning friend, "They said that because they don't see you as fat." Yeah, right. I think sometimes it's just because they don't really see me at all. Don't get me wrong, everyone has their own troubles and sometimes it means you're a size 4 and you're worried about 5 pounds. I can respect that on one level. Body image is a bitch for everyone. But on another level it just hurts.